Visitations Abroad Inspire Author’s Ghostly Tale

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASue Owens Wright is an award-winning author of fiction and nonfiction. She is an eleven-time finalist for the Maxwell, awarded annually by the Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA) to the best writer on the subject of dogs. She has twice won the Maxwell Award and earned special recognition from the Humane Society of the United States for her writing. She writes the acclaimed Beanie and Cruiser Mystery Series, including Howling Bloody Murder, Sirius About Murder, Embarking On Murder and Braced For Murder, which is recommended on the American Kennel Club’s list of Best Dog Books.

Her nonfiction books include What’s Your Dog’s IQ?, 150 Activities for Bored Dogs, and People’s Guide to Pets. She has been published in numerous magazines, including Dog Fancy, Mystery Scene, AKC GAZETTE, Fido Friendly, The Bark, and Animal Fair. Her work also appears in several anthologies, including PEN Oakland’s Fightin’ Words, along with Norman Mailer and other literary notables. Her newest novel is The Secret of Bramble Hill.

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I’ve always loved reading a thrilling ghost story like Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House or Wuthering Heights, by Emily Brontë.  I’m also a diehard fan of Edgar Allen Poe’s eerie tales, and I made sure to visit the Poe Museum years ago when I was in Richmond, Virginia, for my book signing at Creatures ‘n Crooks Bookshoppe. Whenever a character encounters a brooding old manor house in such stories, the chances are good that it’s haunted. The authors no doubt found their inspiration at such places in real life, as I have.


Having visited the Brontë Parsonage Museum of Haworth on my travels in Yorkshire, England, I’m convinced that the Brontë sisters didn’t have to venture too far from home to find inspiration for their classic tales of romance and mystery. The bleak parsonage stands beside one of the spookiest graveyards I saw in England, and there are many. A walk on the windswept Yorkshire moors could stir any writer’s imagination, as it did for the Brontë sisters, who often wandered upon well-worn footpaths near the parsonage that meandered across the desolate moors. Popular Brontë walking tours offer tourists the chance to hike on the high moors and in beautiful Worth Valley, but I missed taking the tour on a gray day when it started to rain. I’m more accustomed to sunny California strolls, but I doubt that the inclement weather would have deterred the Brontës.


While touring in England, I stayed at a number of historic homes dating back centuries. When I returned from my trip abroad years ago, I began writing my first novel, a paranormal romance inspired by the beautiful English countryside and purportedly haunted locales across Britain.  The Secret of Bramble Hill is set in Cornwall, where I walked along the same precarious shale cliffs of the scenic Cornish coast as the heroine in my novel.  In my book, Tessa Field possesses psychic abilities that enable her to see and communicate with the dead. While I don’t claim to share Tessa’s “gift,” as her dear departed aunt Emily called it, I could easily have believed that a resident ghost inhabited some of those “wuthering” English manor houses where I lodged during my travels. This book is the result of those chilling “visitations” in England. I hope that people will enjoy some thrills and chills of their own while reading The Secret of Bramble Hill.


The Secret of Bramble Hill buy links:
Barnes & Noble  //  Amazon


4 thoughts on “Visitations Abroad Inspire Author’s Ghostly Tale

  1. This is an enchanting interview, Lelia; Sue Owens Wright’s book is a must-have on my list. Since I adore dogs and since she is noted for her books on dogs, makes her endearing to me; however, since Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights is the reason I studied English in college ( I read the book many times) and I also adored the other Bronte’s, I have often speculated how one family could be so very articulate with the written word, and during a time frame when female writers were not considered appropriate; I believe four Brontes wrote: one was a brother, I am interested in her book and need to put it on my B and N wish list.


    • It was quite a thrill when I visited the parsonage where the Bronte sisters wrote their masterpieces to see where they actually did their work. There was also an interesting museum, which included tiny handmade books the sisters created as children. It must have been quite an isolated life out there on the lonely moors, but obviously it sparked their creativity. One thing in the museum that really stuck in my mind was a charming watercolor painting of Emily’s Staffordshire terrier named Keeper. The love for her devoted pet was so apparent in that painting. Their brother, Bramwell, was also an artist. I’m glad you enjoyed reading my post, and I hope you enjoy the book.


    • Thanks so much, Alice. it’s good to hear from you! I’m glad that you enjoyed my post, courtesy of Lelia, who invited me to one of my very first book signings. It was quite a thrill to travel all the way to Richmond, Virginia for an event at her delightful bookstore, Creatures ‘N Crooks.
      I had a lot of adventures in England. The beautiful Lake District is still on my must-see list. I adore my basset hounds, too. They are still inspiring me to write more Tahoe mysteries. You’ll be happy to know that the next book in the Beanie and Cruiser Mysteries, “Ears for Murder,” will be released later this year from Black Opal Books. So stay tuned. 😉


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